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2 weeks at Sit Thailand


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Our travel plans changed due to some visa issues in Vietnam (but that’s a different story) so we found ourselves in chiang Mai for two weeks. My wife and I came to Thailand with the main  intention of training Muay Thai with some travelling thrown in from time to time. As we hadn’t done much research on gyms in chiang Mai and we were sitting in the airport waiting to board our flight from Hanoi, we furiously searched forums and  reviews of the best gyms in chiang Mai. We had it down to a choice of three gyms Hong Thong, Manop gym and sit Thailand, all top class gyms in their own right with great coaches and we probably couldn’t of gone wrong going to anyone of them. We decided on Sit Thailand and I’m so glad we did! 
 

A little bit about the gym,

The gym is a decent size and open on two sides which gives it a nice airy feel and is tucked away at the back of a holiday villa compound. It’s a family run gym and kru thailand and his family all live on site. The gym has about 8 bags and 1 large raised ring. There is a small area with free weights and some machines for strength and conditioning work outs. Toilets and showers at the back. There is a cooler full of ice and a water machine and a full rack of plastic cups for drinking. The gym has the feeling of a real fighters gym but still with an alls welcome vibe.

we messaged the gym on Facebook to just touch base with them and check what the training times were. 
6:30am if you want to run 7:20am if not, afternoon training starts at 4pm 

the training,

we turned up at at 7:20am the next day ready for our first session at Sit Thailand, we were the only people there apart from Kru O who said his hellos and ushered us into 15minutes of skipping followed by a couple of rounds of shadow boxing, by this time the fighters had started to trickle back into the gym from their morning runs. Kru Thailand then came out from the back and spoke to my wife and i about where we were from and where we were staying. He’s actually a really down to earth nice guy. He then took me on the pads for 4 x 5 minute rounds, more than likely to gauge my level of Muay Thai. This went on to be the best 20 minutes of coaching I have ever received from anybody, he corrected many things in my technique but the difference being he explained why he was correcting it. The attention to detail and the explanation he was getting across blew me away. Everything was covered footwork, balance, defence, attack for each technique.

Into the ring I went for clinching for the next 30 - 40 minutes there is about 10 people in the ring so it’s not crowded. Thailand pairs everyone up with who he thinks is equal in size/ ability and watches the full thing and if he thinks anyone needs to change partners he changes them, (this to me is a sign of a good coach) he walks around the ring and give information to everyone fighter or not everyone gets the same level of attention.
I’d like to note here that when we arrived he had about 8 fighters getting ready for a big show in Issan that he was Co promoter and he still had time for the non fighters if not more time. 

my wife’s experience 

my wife did not want to clinch because she was a little anxious as she is a bit new to the sport and clinching is still a bit alien to her. This was no problem she was taking on the pads with Kru O for many rounds, learning technique then onto bag work. From the ring Kru Thailand sees everything and he headed over to my wife and worked with her perfecting her low kick technique for a good 5 to 10 minutes. With his trademark “watch Thailand, watch Thailand” as he shows her how to low kick and where her head position should be until she hears the approval which comes in a high pitch “aghhhhhhhh”. She’s got it and back in the ring he goes. 
my wife came away from the session with an even bigger love for the sport and was dying to get back in for the afternoon session. This was a big thing for her because she was very anxious before we set off for the gym in the morning which is natural I think starting anywhere new can be anxious and I’d be lying that I don’t get that feeling my self from time to time. 
 

sparring 

After clinching straight into sparring again over the watchful aye of Kru Thailand who picks the pairs. Sparring is very technical and controlled, light but fast again 5 minute rounds (which killed me) for about 4/5 rounds . The gym is mainly active fighters atleast when we were there so the sparring was very beneficial for me, in my opinion there is no better way to learn than to spar you find out what works what doesn’t and what you need to work on. 
My wife didn’t spar but again was included and Kru Thailand took her and worked on her elbows for 10 minutes. My wife eased into the gym and over a couple of days eventually sparred and clinched every session and she loved it. She almost always sparred and clinched with the younger Thais because of her size but even at a young age they were very technical and give her a lot of time. 


conclusion 

sit Thailand is an absolute gem the level of coaching you receive from Kru Thailand pinsinchai is priceless. He is that hands on in every single session that it feels like a one to one with him everyday. They have two more very good pad holders in kru O and Kru tan. My Muay Thai has definitely Improved since being here even in a short time or two weeks. If you want to fight then that’s is no problem here with smaller fights around chiang Mai to larger fights in stadiums in Bangkok they will be able to sort them out. 
the main attraction here is Kru Thailand pinsinchai and for good reason, great fighter, great coach and a great man. 
I would highly recommend this gym and will definitely be returning 

we are heading to kem Muay Thai in February for two months and I will leave a review of our experience there as well and how the compare. 
 

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